Choosing A Webcam Placing And Lighting
There are two main things to consider here: what webcam you use and how you use it.
These are both important because they will determine how youll be able to present yourself. A clear, sharp, well-positioned image will make you look professional and presentable.
The webcam you use will largely be determined by your budget and preference. If possible, an external webcam thats a price-point above the cheapest would be good. If you have a very up-to-date laptop, the inbuilt webcam will probably suffice too.
If youre looking to buy an external webcam, then youll get great value out of the Logitech C900 series , but there are plenty of other brands such as Creative. Do some googling, read some reviews and figure out which you might like best.
Do not use a tablet or phone camera if you can avoid it.
When deciding where to place your camera, bear in mind that the webcam should be looking slightly down towards you. A low placement looking upwards is never flattering. Try and make sure the camera is positioned a little above your eye level.
Its also important to practice talking into the camera instead of looking directly at the on-screen image of the interviewer. Virtual eye contact is a difficult skill to master, but if you can achieve it, youll make a much better impression.
Make A Great First Impression
One of the best video interview tips we can give you is to have smart answers at the ready. Its time to focus on what youre going to say to win over a potential employer. Need some help preparing smart answers? Join Monster for free today. As a member, youll get interview insights, career advice, and job search tips sent directly to your inbox. Youll learn how to answer questionseverything from why you want the job to what your weaknesses arein such a way that your skills and value shine through, even if youre a hundred miles away.
Minimize Interruptionsbut Take Them In Stride If They Happen
Do whatever you can to cut down on the chances of being interrupted. If you can, set up in a room where you can close the door and inform anyone you share a space with that they shouldnt disturb you during your interview Check your space the day before for any unexpected distractions. You dont want to be caught off guard by an ongoing construction project, for example. And make sure you turn off or silence your phone or any other electronic device that might make noise and pause any notifications on your computer.
However, if theres a high chance of you being interrupted by something outside of your control, mentioning it at the start can prepare your interviewer and show them youre proactive. It can also help settle your nerves about the situation. For example, if you have a dog in the next room that might start barking, you can make your interviewer aware of that possibility.
Its not about erasing the fact that youre in your home. Its about being as professional as you can given the circumstance, Eonnet says.
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Practice These 8 Video Interview Questions And Get Hired Faster
If you get confident with the 8 video interview questions and answers above, youll give yourself a great shot at acing your interview.
A video interview really isnt that different from any interview, but you need to be comfortable explaining to an employer why youre job hunting, what youre looking for, and why you want their specific job.
Also be ready to share past accomplishments, with real examples of what youve done for other employers.
Finally, make sure youre comfortable with the video format and your technology at home in general. For further help with this, we recommend our list of video interview tips.
Project A Confident Tone And Body Language
You never really know how you come across on-screen until you record yourself talking and watch the results. Yes, it can be painful. But it gives you a chance to practise and reveals any unfortunate habits.
If there are questions you know to expect, practise them specifically. Deliver your answer directly to the camera, watch the result, and adjust as necessary for next time.
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Practice Practice Practice For Your Video Interview
In the weeks, days, hours leading up to your video interview, we recommend very concentrated practice to get comfortable both with your interview skills and the weirdness of interviewing on camera.
Interviewing is a skill , so the more you practice, the better youll get.
Practice with a friend, a counselor, a spouse, a boyfriend or girlfriend, a parent. If all else fails, even better, record yourself answering questions.
Having the visual feedback of a recording greatly increases your interview skills. You can record your answers on a webcam or phone to monitor how you look and sound on camera and adjust accordingly.
Benefit To The Employer
For employers, the benefit assumed is increased efficiency. They reduce the initial manpower hours for scheduling and conducting live interviews, even over the phone, and this can greatly cut down on the time spent reviewing candidates.
If an interviewee does not have a great start, the reviewer can just move on instead of what would have happened in a live interview wasting the time to see it through, or giving the candidate false hope.
The other plus for the employer is that the reviewer or recruiter/human resource person is not identified, so he/she will also cut down on calls from job seekers checking in. Of course, this is not so good for you, the job seeker!
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Have You Set Up Your Space
- Watch this quick tutorial on effective interviewing – – are you using all of their best practices?
- Additional tips:
- Consider skype/zooming, etc: one of your friends to have them tell you if you are coming through clearly and if you and your space look professional.
- Remember that you can also record yourself on Zoom to check yourself out.
- Finally, also consider moving the video of your interviewers as close as possible to your camera , so it looks like you’re looking directly at your interviewers.
Show Up A Few Minutes Early
You wouldnt walk into the building where a 3 PM interview was being held at exactly 3 PM or even at 2:59 PM, so you shouldnt cut it so close for a video interview either. Prepare your computer by closing all extra windows and tabs. And if you have a portfolio or anything similar youd like to be able to show via screen share during your interview, make sure that its ready in an easy-to-access, but minimized, window.
Open up the program where your video interview will take place a few minutes early. Before you fully enter the meeting, a lot of the common video interview software will give you a chance to check your shot. Then, relax, says Turner. Be completely in place a few minutes early and do a few breathing exercises. That way, when you click to join the call and the interview starts, youre already ready to go.
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Where Can I Do A Video Interview
Its important to pick a quiet place to interview without an elaborate backdrop or distractions so that you can be the focal point on the screen. You can interview at home if you have a clean and private space. If this is not possible, consider going to a coworker center to ensure there are no interruptions or distractions during your video conference interview. For an interview in a coworker center make sure you arrive early so you have time to get situated. Ask for assistance if youre not sure how to use the equipment.
How Tangerine Bank Uses Lifesize To Grow Their Team With Video Interviews
High-quality video conferencing is helping companies like Tangerine Bank compete for top talent. By deploying pop-up banks using mall kiosks and other access points outside of its brick-and-mortar offices, Tangerine Bank can interview local candidates using Lifesize well before their new locations are opened to the public. We have more time to attract the right people compared to when we had to wait to actually be on site, says Giancarlo Palleschi, telecommunications analyst for the bank. Now, the candidates were interested in can click a link for HR to interview them. Interviewers use the face-to-face conversations to assess the persons demeanor when interacting with customers.
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Thinking You Can Googleyour Way To Success
For a videointerview, youll use a computer, tablet, or smartphone to connect. This meansa powerful hunk of technology is within grabbing distance. If you get stumpedby a question, you might be tempted to hop online and look for an answer.
Similarly,you might think you can get a leg up by writing out answers to various regularor behavioralinterview questions. Then, you can just read them off when one comesup.
Sure, this might seem like a guaranteed path toward success, but it isnt. In most cases, youll get caught.
Because the hiring manager can see you and will probably notice when your attention keeps flickering around the screen, or your hands are suddenly clicking on keys.
Even if you try to be stealthy and mute your mic or fake a video feed issue to get that extra moment, thatll come across as suspicious, including if you only do it once. Hiring managers are no dummies. Theyve seen these tricks before.
Resisttemptation and dont try to use a computer or another device for an advantage.If you prepare properly for your interview, youll be fine. Resorting tosubterfuge just isnt necessary, and it could actually cause you to lose out ona job if you get caught.
Why Are Video Interviewsused
There are plenty of situations where video interviews are helpful. For example, companies can use them to interview candidates who live in other parts of the state, country, or planet. It can also allow hiring managers who travel for their work to meet with candidates regardless of where they end up.
Today, videointerviews are standing in for in-person meetings more often. Concerns aboutthe coronavirus and some mandatory shelter-in-place orders mean people arentgetting together like they once did. With a video interview, a hiring managercan screen candidates even during these uncertain times.
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Other Body Language Best Practices
People want to work with people they like. It should go without saying that you want to be friendly, personable, and agreeable during your interview. Smile naturally and nod when you agree with something the interviewer says. Just dont overdo it or else you risk looking like a bobble head.
40% of interviewers said a lack of a smile is a good enough reason not to consider a candidate.
Smiling helps create a connection with those interviewing you.
You can also use body language to show interest and enthusiasm for the job. Try sitting on the edge of your seat and leaning in slightly rather than slouching or leaning back. Project open body language by keeping your arms at your side instead of folding them in front of you, which can come across as defensive or guarded.
20% of interviewers said candidates who sat with their arms crossed were not considered because their body language reflected lack of confidence.
Crossing your arms or holding your head in your hand projects boredom or defensiveness.
Sometimes body language can be louder than your interview answers. Job applicants often fidget, frequently adjust their hair, and/or chew their nails out of nervousness. While this is understandable, this nervous energy will distract the interviewer. Take a deep breath before entering the virtual interview room and try to minimize unnecessary movement.
Put Your Candidates At Ease By Sharing Expectations Timelines Names Of Interviewers And Maybe Even A Virtual Background
Many job hunters are nervous, if not outright stressed. So, once your candidates know that their interviews will be done via videoconference, reach out to them and give them a rundown on the details of their interviews, just as you would if they were coming in to talk to people onsite.
Here are some useful things to share:
- Tips on how to access the videoconferencing technology and whether they need to download any software.
- Your teams expectations for their interviews. For example, will the interviewer request a work sample or ask them to solve a problem on the spot?
- A timeline that details when their interviews will start and end and the names and titles of each person they will meet, along with links to those peoples LinkedIn profiles.
As an added precaution, give them a backup phone number to reach you in case theres a glitch or the technology gets wonky. Ask them to share the same with you. Finally, consider sending out the same virtual background to every candidate to eliminate so-called background bias the dismissive judging of candidates for not having glamorous home settings.
Lighting For Your Webcam
Lighting is incredibly important I cant stress this enough. It can take you from looking like a troll to looking like a movie star.
Why do you think Oprah has such powerful lights on her set? The heat from those things could melt lead. .
The nice folks over at Wistia put together a useful set of tips and a video for webcam lighting, which I recommend watching:
The idea is that you dont need an expensive lighting set-up. You just need two clamp lights, some cheap CFL daylight / full-spectrum bulbs, and a couple of light-stands
Have the lights about 2.5 3.5 feet on either side of you at least the same height as the webcam .
PRO TIP: The CFL full spectrum bulbs mimic sunlight, so they make you look better than regular bulbs.
Youre looking to achieve nice even lighting across your face this will minimize shadows, remove wrinkles, and make you look fabulous.
So your set-up might look something like this:
Courtesy of Wistia
If youre on a very tight budget or very short on time, you can create an almost-as-good effect by positioning two lamps, one on either side of your desk with the light source ideally at the height of the webcam or a little bit higher .
Again, this wont give you the same Oprah-like effect as the set-up described above, but youll look much better than if you just settle for regular room lighting.
The Two Types Of Video Interviews
Also known as one-way or on-demand interviews
Unlike live video interviews, pre-recorded interviews are new to some job applicants. During these online interviews, you can expect to read interview questions and record your answers to the questions. One or more people from the hiring team will review your responses at a later time.
Dont worry: after reading or watching each interview question, youll have a few seconds to think. Only then will a recording begin so you can respond.
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Write Out A Few Notesbut Refer To Them As Little As Possible
Because your interviewer wont be able to see everything you have on your desk , it might be tempting to have a lot of information in front of you for a video interview. But be careful. Turner recommends having only a few quick notes in front of you and glancing at them sparingly. Write down key figures and other small snippets, not whole answers. You dont want to sound like youre just reading, she says.
Meanwhile, Eonnet discourages keeping any notes in front of you at all. The best interviews are conversations and notes can become a crutch, Eonnet says. A huge reason someone decides to hire you is because they feel like you made a connection during the interview, which can be hard to do if youre distracted.
If youd like to have a few sparse notes for your interview, make sure you also have them out during your practice. Not only will this show you whether you can use them without it disrupting the flow of the conversation, the more you read them over, the less youll end up having to refer to them.
Be Conscious Of Your Body Language
Treat a video interview like you would an in-person one. Just because theres a screen between you and the candidate does not mean that common courtesies are off the table. A whopping 55 percent of communication is nonverbal, and another 38 percent is conveyed through tone of voice your words only amount to seven percent.
In short, the way you present yourself is extremely important, even in a video interview. Make eye contact, sit up straight and nod to show youre following along with what the candidate is saying. Dont forget to smile!
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